A federal government entity is suggesting that children above the age of 6 should be screened for obesity as a way of promoting better public health.
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force says that patients meeting the guidelines for obesity could be referred to programs that include "dietary, physical activity and behavioral counseling components," while also citing minimal harm from such screening and "limited evidence" that improvements from such efforts can be sustained in the year after such treatment.
A USA Today report cites findings from the report showing that children who spent 25 or more hours participating in weight management programs over a six-month period tended to see health and weight improvements.
The newspaper also noted that currently, there are not enough such programs available nationwide for children and families who may need them, while also pointing out that obesity can affect "almost every organ system in the child's body."
Other recent reports have noted that the nation's obesity rate appears to be leveling off somewhat, while still remaining high.
From a health insurance and medical perspective, one result of the increase in childhood obesity has been a large upswing in the number of type 2 diabetes cases. In fact, that growth rate has been so significant that health professionals have basically stopped referring to the condition as "adult onset" diabetes.